Lawyer’s swaggering response to ‘ham-fisted’ cease and desist letter goes viral

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By Alex Aldridge on

The US legal blogosphere was lit up yesterday by a brilliant leaked response to a cease and desist letter. It left the lawyer behind the original missive mired in public shame amid suggestions that he may be both “ham-fisted” and a “meanie”…

Below is the cease and desist letter in question, by Richard Trenk, an in-house lawyer for the borough of West Orange. It’s addressed to resident Jake Freivald, who runs local information website


Now, it’s safe to say that Trenk didn’t expect what happened next. The response is from legal big shot Stephen Kaplitt, formerly of Weil Gotshal and the US State Department, who acted for Freivald pro bono.